Customer Review

14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A good travel companion: light, great low light performance, very good still photos, September 22, 2011
This review is from: Sony NEX-5N 16.1 MP Compact Interchangeable Lens Touchscreen Camera with 18-55mm Lens (Black) (Camera)
Length:: 0:08 Mins

I first purchased Sony NEX-C3 and liked many things about it, but two problems caused me to trade it in for Sony NEX-5N, which addressed those two problems. I am very pleased with Sony NEX-5N. If someone is considering both of these cameras let me start with the differences between the two cameras that made me choose NEX-5N.

My main issue with C3 was seeing the LCD screen in the sun. SONY will have an OLED high resolution view finder for NEX series in November 2011. However the mount on the OLED electronic viewfinder is only compatible with NEX-5N and is not compatible with NEX-C3.
Update: I now own the OLED view finder. Love it. For more details you can see my review of it: http://www.amazon.com/review/RXNWAESUUHR49/ref=cm_srch_res_rtr_alt_8

The second issue was ability to easily override the automatically chosen a focus point. NEX-5N has a touch screen which allows one to point where the focus should be, and sometimes this allows you to compose a photo which focal point off-center (automatic focus has a strong preference for items in the center).

WEIGHT

The weight of the camera with 18-55mm lens, battery, memory card, and strap is 17.1 oz.

The body of the camera is 4 1/8 inches wide x 1 inch wide in the narrow part. It is small but not so small that is inconvenient to hold or operate. Overall the camera feels good in your hand, the mechanical parts (hinges and other controls) feel well made and pretty sturdy. The 18-55mm lens in its smallest configuration is 3 inches long.

FAVORITE FEATURES

Features that I loved, two features I never had in other cameras I owned:
* Sweeping panorama - I absolutely loved it! It worked fantastically even hand held taking photos
of night time skyline. (I am attaching a photo showing this feature)
* Anti blur - in addition to having Optical Steady Shot this camera has an option for hand-held night shots.
It takes 6 photos in quick succession and combines them to generate one shot reducing blur due to unsteady hands.
Note: these settings produce JPEG format even when the setting is set to RAW

PHOTO QUALITY

I am pleased with the quality of the photos. I was very impressed with low light performance. I was able to take crisp hand-held pictures of New York skyline using the "anti blur" setting. With sweeping panorama option I do not feel the need for a wider lens. I do get significantly more barrel distortion from the SONY 18-55mm lens than from the Canon 17mm-85mm.

BATTERY

NEX-5N comes with a separate battery recharger, which is handy since the camera drains the battery rather fast it is nice to have a spare battery charging while the camera is being used. I purchased a 3-d party (Wasabi) battery pack (two NP-FW50 batteries, one Wasabi AC charger, one car charger converter for Wasabi AC charger, European converter) which works well with my NEX-5N. The entire pack costs less than one extra SONY battery: Wasabi Power Battery and Charger Kit for Sony NP-FW50, Alpha SLT-A33, SLT-A35, SLT-A55V, NEX-3, NEX-5, NEX-5N, NEX-7, NEX-C3

USER INTERFACE

NEX-5N has a touch screen which allows one to point where the focus should be, and sometimes this allows you to compose a photo which focal point off-center (automatic focus has a strong preference for items in the center).

By twicking display options I was able to make the UI easy to navigate. The most helpful setting was "Big font" under Camera options. Not only did it make the text easy to read, it removed a larger number of least useful icons which de-clutters the display.

The changes I found helpful:
* Turned off pop up help (located under "Setup" and called "Help Guide Display")
Why: The pop-up help gets in the way of every operation, you cannot see the screen as it totally obscures
what you are looking at, when you get rid of pop-up then the screen you were looking at also goes away.
* Turned off object tracking (located under "Camera" top menu)
Why: When you are trying to compose a photo where the focus is NOT in the center, you can use the touch screen
to indicate where the focus should be. However, if the object tracking is turned on the focus begins moving
and shifting even though the thing you are trying to focus on is not moving. The camera prefers
items in the center of the photo, rather then a composition using 1/3 rule.
* Turned off face registration and smile shutter (located under "Set Up")
Why: these options got in the way of a good photo composition

TRIPOD

I was able to use the tripod quick release I use for my SLR. The quick release plate is a wider than NEX-5N body. It extends both in the front and the back of the camera. You cannot balance the camera on it (it tips forward), however once it is on the tripod it is very secure. I am attaching a photo which demonstrates the fit of the quick release.

PHOTOSHOP COMPATIBILITY

Edited 10/23/2011: When I originally purchased the camera Photoshop CS5 did not recognize the RAW format produced by NEX-5N. However today I downloaded the latest CS5 update and now it recognized ARW files generated by NEX-5N.

PHOTOS INCLUDED with this review (see under customer photos)

1) Hand-held panorama shot at twilight showing a sail boat leaving New York Seaport with the skyline on the right. Split image in the same photo is a portion of the sail boat mast in actual pixel size, so you can see the details of the noise.

2) A shot of the New York seaport taken with the camera on the tripod. In the split image you see three sections of the photo in actual pixel size. #1 is close to the left edge, #2 is center, and #3 is a section close to the right edge. You can see the difference in sharpness between the center and the edges in the close ups.

3) Photo shows the fit of the tripod quick release plate. I am able to use the same quick release I use for my DSLR.

Disclaimer: My interest is still photography and I have not used the movie option yet.

Overall, I am pleased with this camera. I found this camera to be a good substitute for my DSLR when I travel.

Ali Julia review
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No

[Add comment]
Post a comment
To insert a product link use the format: [[ASIN:ASIN product-title]] (What's this?)
Amazon will display this name with all your submissions, including reviews and discussion posts. (Learn more)
Name:
Badge:
This badge will be assigned to you and will appear along with your name.
There was an error. Please try again.
Please see the full guidelines here.

Official Comment

As a representative of this product you can post one Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.   Learn more
The following name and badge will be shown with this comment:
 (edit name)
After clicking the Post button you will be asked to create your public name, which will be shown with all your contributions.

Is this your product?

If you are the author, artist, manufacturer or an official representative of this product, you can post an Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.  Learn more
Otherwise, you can still post a regular comment on this review.

Is this your product?

If you are the author, artist, manufacturer or an official representative of this product, you can post an Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.   Learn more
 
System timed out

We were unable to verify whether you represent the product. Please try again later, or retry now. Otherwise you can post a regular comment.

Since you previously posted an Official Comment, this comment will appear in the comment section below. You also have the option to edit your Official Comment.   Learn more
The maximum number of Official Comments have been posted. This comment will appear in the comment section below.   Learn more
Prompts for sign-in
 

Comments

Tracked by 1 customer

Sort: Oldest first | Newest first
Showing 1-1 of 1 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Oct 27, 2011 1:54:12 PM PDT
Geo. G. says:
The information you provided in your review of this camera was very helpful to me and your writing is easily understandable and right to the point; a very good style that not many people posess. Thanks for your thoughtful very helpful information.
‹ Previous 1 Next ›

Review Details

Item

Reviewer

Ali Julia
(#1 Hall OF FAME REVIEWER)    (#1 REVIEWER)   

Location: boston, mass

Top Reviewer Ranking: 1